Routes and places to ride

Horse riding is a popular activity in East Lothian. There are lots of places to go if you ride responsibly. Follow the main principles of the Scottish Outdoor Access Code by:

  • respecting the interests of other people
  • caring for the environment
  • being responsible for your own actions

Riding on firm or hard surfaces, such as wide paths and tracks and on well-drained ground causes few problems, but please follow local guidance. However, hooves can damage newly built paths or soft field margins. Please kick your horse's dung off paths wherever possible.

In some places access rights do not apply, always check the Code, visit the British Horse Society Scotland website or contact us if you are unsure.  

Beaches

When riding on the beach, please respect the environment and follow designated paths through sensitive dune systems. Do not gallop past other users and remember to plan your ride around tide times, with low tide being the best time to visit during busy periods. A couple of good beaches to ride at are Gullane and Belhaven Bay.

At Belhaven Bay, a voluntary riding scheme is in operation which is part of a larger group created to manage the various recreational interests at this location. Riders register for a one off £10 fee and are given a voluntary permit together with weatherproof map, indicating the recommended riding routes.

Paths along old railway lines

These routes are also popular with other users who may not always be 'horse aware' so take care, particularly when approaching walkers from the rear. Some examples are the Pencaitland Railway Walk, Whitecraig to Smeaton Railway Walk and Haddington to Longniddry Railway Walk.

Remember some people are afraid of horses.